Extract of the Foreword by Andrew McDonald- Conference Handbook


March 31


01:00 am

I am delighted to welcome Andrew McDonald to the upcoming Conference on 7th April.

Andrew has worked in commercial property for 25 years. Over that time he has worked primarily as a retail property consultant on a range of instructions. From shopping centre leasing and development consultancy, acquiring and disposing retail space for a variety of retailers and, most recently, as an investment consultant buying and selling property investments for a variety of clients. Andrew has worked at a range of companies from the very big (Capita) to the boutique (Tandem Real Estate) so has a good understanding of company cultures what makes people tick.


“It’s almost impossible to refer to the current retail climate without resorting to cliches: ‘unprecedented’, ‘repurposing’ and ‘unchartered-territory’ immediately spring to mind. Of course, there’s often a good reason for a cliche to be born and in this instance these would certainly apply. I was a young surveyor in the late ’90’s when online shopping started to gain traction. At that time some predicted the imminent ‘death of retail’, all the while shiny shopping centres were springing up. There was ferocious competition for shops, with retailers seemingly ignoring the slow-creep of internet sales. These were halcyon days for landlords who had their pick of the premier tenants with rents to match.
I’ll confess to developing a tin-ear with the retail doom-mongers over the years: The high street wasn’t dying and coupled with that, internet sales were growing. So, the two could co-habit satisfactorily! There were bumps along the road, but these were generally from seismic global events such as the Credit Crunch and Brexit”.